What if the day you really let go, you lose everything?
I’ve had a block that I’ve not been able to shift. Despite helping others with their mental health, there was something I just couldn’t do. I’d tell others to do it all the time. I’d actively encourage everyone to do it and support them while they did too if necessary. I was proud that all my kids did it and do it often. It’s good, it’s ok, you need to do it. I tell my clients, do it! Do it every damn day if you need to. Do it whenever you feel the urge to. But, NOT ME. I wouldn’t and didn’t do it.
If I did it. I was weak, I was pathetic. If it started to happen I’d fight so hard to stop it and it soon would. I’d never let it take hold. Because that was just pathetic and weak ! I hate it. Nope. Not having it, not doing it, not happening. I’d be so angry with myself. I’d want to punish my self. And often would too via some form of self harm; be it cutting, not eating or not doing something I’d had planned. I needed punishing because I’d let myself be weak and pathetic and there ain’t none of that happening. I’m meant to be strong. I’m meant to be the one people are scared of. Not a weak pathetic little woman. How could I!!
I never looked at why I was like this. I didn’t want to, I didn’t need to. It was just how it was and should be. I’d never felt or seen a need to question it. It took me until now, until I was 33 to allow myself to answer why? Why Nicola will you now allow yourself to properly cry?! Why as soon as the tears start do you work so hard to stop them?
Why am I not allowed to cry?
Why am I feeling I am not worthy enough to cry. And that crying is pathetic of me and so so weak. Why am I allowing crying to make me angry with myself. If my kids cry over not knowing which chocolate bar to pick. I don’t call them weak and pathetic and tell them to get a grip. I hug them tightly. Tell them, let it all out. And then I tell them let’s choose ALL the chocolate bars (and let’s share with mum!). If a client cries during a 1:1. I tell them, keep going let it all out. This is your safe space to let those emotions pour out and I push and encourage them to fully cry. Not just a few tear drops. I mean CRY! I didn’t see them as weak or pathetic, in fact the entire opposite. I seen it as they were letting out emotions. Something they needed to do and should do.
Because crying is a release, a release I haven’t used since I was a little girl. Today when I finally allowed myself to explore this block and question it. This is what I found.
Why I couldn’t cry until now
You see, back when I was a little girl I had a very traumatic experience during a police interview. It wasn’t police in uniform, I was in one of those special interview rooms for kids. When these two ladies took me in. I felt safe, they had been so kind to me and made me laugh they had reassured me so many times that I was safe now. I was just starting to feel like I might be that maybe they really could safe and help me. So, off we go into this room. With two big grey sofas full of colourful cushions. A coffee table with blank paper and big huge crayons and pencils (freshly sharpened pencils !!) a few finger puppets all lined up in a semi circle (they looked fun) and a big huge mirror. I’d never seen a mirror so speak ! It spanned the entire wall. I remember looking in it, seeing us all and thinking why do they need a big mirror there? Then one of the ladies said she was going to show me some magic ! So we waved at the mirror and she then pointed out a door at the end of the wall. We went into the door and she showed me a room with a room full of cameras and a woman who pushed around this stick and now it moved the cameras! We zoomed in on the other lady who was sat on the sofa behind the mirror! It was amazing. Then she said it’s time to go talk now Nicola.
We sat on the sofas and they told me if at any point I got too upset that it’s ok, just tell them I want my mum and they’ll go get her for me. So, off that went talking and asking things I was drawing things and saying things I didn’t like. Then they wanted to use the puppets. They wanted me to show what the puppets where doing. That’s was it. I WANTED IT TO STOP! I started crying, like proper little girl can’t get her breath style crying and I then said it. I WANT MY MUM! But did they get my mum? NO. Instead they kept telling me to stop crying. Now wasn’t the time to cry. It was time to be strong and brave and show them what the puppet family where doing. “No more of those silly tears now, be a strong girl then you can mummy”. So, eventually I stopped crying. I did what they wanted and answered all there questions. I drew the pictures. I played with their puppets. I hated every second. But I was strong and brave and didn’t cry anymore. Then I got my mum!! We left the room the place and never had to go back ever again.
It’s took me over 25 years to go back here. I’d been back here many times. Hating them and remembering that awful awful pain of them not getting my mum. But, I’d never realised it was one of the biggest causes for my block. Until I finally allowed myself to answer why I wasn’t allowed cry. And my gosh did I cry. I cried harder then I’ve ever cried since I was 8 years old. I was totally and utterly gone. And yeah I did feel pathetic and weak still but no where near as much as before. But what I did feel when it finished, I felt such a release of pressure. The sort of release I’ve only ever experienced through self harm. I felt like I’d lifted a bit of the weight of me. Like I was back down to Earth. No longer speaking at a thousand miles per hour. I had regained control of my emotions !!! But to do that. I’d had to dig deep. I’d had to find my block and I’d to let my emotion be and pass!
I learned today that big girls DO cry. That crying has nothing at all to do with being worthy or strong. That there is no such thing as crocodile tears, that growing up and continually after that even being told stop crying. Stop putting on crocodile tears. Stop being so emotional. Be strong. This is why I don’t feel worthy enough to cry. This is why I see crying as a weakness. This is why I think I’m not strong. Because I wasn’t allowed to cry!!
But, now I’m an adult. I’m a strong adult. And I’m a mama of 4. And I always tell my babies to cry if they need to. To let it all out. And now finally I am their strong mamma who cries too. Not just a few tears. I fully snot streaming breath gasping cry!
Everyday even now I’m still becoming stronger than my mind and regaining control over my moods and emotions. I can help you be the same too, just add your name to the waiting list for the Stronger Than Your Mind Academy, find out more and add your name click here.